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Tennis | WTA

Lisicki powers into Pattaya semifinals



Germany's Sabine Lisicki reached her first semifinal in two years on Friday when she clawed her way past New Zealand's Marina Erakovic 5-7, 6-3, 6-2 at the Pattaya Open.

Lisicki's last semifinal spot was at this same Thai venue in 2011, the same year she reached the Wimbledon last four.

That helped her to a ranking of 12 in the world, but an injury-hit 2012 saw her slip out of the top 50.

"I didn't serve perfectly," the fifth-seeded Lisicki said. "My service games were always close, but I was also almost always holding.

"That gave me a lot of confidence later when I was a break point down or at 15-30, that I could serve my way out of it. Sometimes the negative, you can turn into a positive."

Lisicki will face Russia's Nina Bratchikova, who defeated Japan's Ayumi Morita 6-1, 3-6, 6-1, for a spot in the final.

Saturday's other semifinal will see fourth seeded Romanian Sorana Cirstea take on second seed Maria Kirilenko of Russia.

Cirstea needed just 56 minutes to record a 6-3, 6-0 victory over Latvia's Anastasija Sevastova while Kirilenko fought off two set points in the first set tie-break and reeled off five straight games to get past compatriot Elena Vesnina, 7-6 (8/6), 6-3.

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